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Ghislaine Maxwell ‘Constantly’ Photographed Topless Young Girls, Jeffrey Epstein’s Ex-House Manager Said in Unsealed Deposition


Audrey Strauss, the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announces charges against Ghislaine Maxwell during a July 2, 2020, press conference in New York City.

Now identified as the mysterious “Doe 1” in Ghislaine Maxwell’s since-settled civil litigation, Jeffrey Epstein’s former house manager testified in a newly unsealed deposition from four years ago that Maxwell took topless photographs of young girls.

“She was a — she was very avid with photographs,” John Alessi testified in June 2016, his now-unsealed deposition reveals. “She had this high-tech camera. She was constantly taking photographs. Not only photographs, but I think it was — she had this special camera. I don’t know what was it. She took photographs, yes.”

Asked whether he saw Maxwell taking pictures of topless girls by Epstein’s pool, Alessi replied: “I saw pictures of topless girls, yes, I did.”

Later on in the transcript, the unidentified questioner asks: “So it’s true that 99.9 percent of the photographs that Ms. Maxwell would take were, in your words, nude, they were topless?”

“Topless, not nude,” Alessi corrected. “Topless.”

“When these girls came to the house, most of the European — there were some Americans; they also took their top off — they would go in the sun, they would go in the pool without the tops,” he added later. “I don’t remember seeing nude girls. Nude, with me, means nothing on. They would have the bottoms on and no tops. Some of them. Some will go with a full swimming costume.”

The transcript excerpts make eight references to albums where Maxwell allegedly stored the photographs.

“Sometimes I saw these albums, and there were pictures of girls at the pool,” Alessi said.

The unsealing of Alessi’s deposition comes from an open-records battle that followed the publication of the Miami Herald’s series “Perversion of Justice,” which renewed attention to dead pedophile Jeffrey Epstein’s 2008 plea deal. The article hav been widely credited for his and Maxwell’s prosecution.

Following the exposé, the Herald went to the Second Circuit Court of Appeals to unseal broad swaths of the court record in alleged victim Virginia Giuffre’s lawsuit claiming Maxwell defamed her by denying that she made her Epstein’s “sex slave.” Giuffre’s settlement with Maxwell kept much of the court record under wraps for years, but a Second Circuit ruling in the Herald’s favor has led to increasing sunlight on the case ever since.

Read the deposition below:

[image via JOHANNES EISELE/AFP via Getty Images]

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Law&Crime's managing editor Adam Klasfeld has spent more than a decade on the legal beat. Previously a reporter for Courthouse News, he has appeared as a guest on NewsNation, NBC, MSNBC, CBS's "Inside Edition," BBC, NPR, PBS, Sky News, and other networks. His reporting on the trial of Ghislaine Maxwell was featured on the Starz and Channel 4 documentary "Who Is Ghislaine Maxwell?" He is the host of Law&Crime podcast "Objections: with Adam Klasfeld."